Event Details

Online Mini-Symposium on Relationships, Stress & Health

Please join the Sabanci University Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences for our online mini-symposium on relationships, stress, and health. 


Time: Monday, May 15, 2023, 4:00 - 5:30 pm Istanbul time (1:00 pm - 2:30 pm UTC)


Amie Gordon, University of Michigan

Title: "A Dyadic Perspective on Stress in Romantic Relationships"

Jeffry Simpson, University of Minnesota

Title: "Early Life Attachment, Stress, and Caregiving as Predictors of Adult Health: A Longitudinal View"


Ozlem Ayduk, University of California, Berkeley (Distinguished Research Fellow, Sabanci University)


The webinar is open to the public free of charge. You may attend online by registering here.


Abstracts and speaker bios may be found below:

Title: A Dyadic Perspective on Stress in Romantic Relationships

Presenter: Amie Gordon, University of Michigan


Romantic relationships are one of the primary sources of support in adulthood. Prior work on stress in couples has primarily focused on understanding situations in which one partner is experiencing stress and the other partner is acting as the support provider, such as when one partner is taking a big exam, experiencing a chronic illness, or undergoing a stressor in the lab. In real life, however, couples are likely to also experience stress simultaneously, such as when two working parents have to juggle work, kids, and household duties. This concurrent stress creates potentially difficult situations in which both partners need to receive and provide support. In this talk, I present data on the role of concurrent stress in romantic relationships both before and during the pandemic. I also present a novel lab paradigm designed to help us understand how couples actually navigate these potential pain points in relationships, compared to times when only one or neither partner is stressed.


Short bio:

Amie Gordon is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan, where she directs the Well-being, Health, and Interpersonal Relationships Lab (WHIRLab). Her research focuses on understanding the social cognitive (e.g., perspective-taking), affective (e.g., gratitude), and biological (e.g., sleep, hormones) factors that shape our closest relationships. The ultimate goal of her research is to identify factors that help people maintain high quality relationships over time, enhancing health and well-being. Amie received her PhD in Social-Personality Psychology from University of California, Berkeley as well as several years of postdoctoral training in Health Psychology at the University of California, San Francisco.


Title:  Early Life Attachment, Stress, and Caregiving as Predictors of Adult Health: A Longitudinal View

Presenter:  Jeffry A. Simpson, University of Minnesota


Emerging evidence suggests that certain types of experiences encountered early in life may impact health outcomes in adulthood.  In this talk, I begin by overviewing key principles of the Social-Developmental Model of Health (Miller & Chen, 2013).  Working with lifespan data from the Minnesota Longitudinal Study of Risk and Adaptation (MLSRA), I then present the findings of several studies showing how early attachment security (versus insecurity), the quality of early maternal care received, and the amount life stress exposure prospectively predict both self-report and biomarker health outcomes many years later in adulthood. Together, these studies reveal that both the quality of early care and the amount of stress encountered early in life uniquely predict adult health outcomes.


Short bio:

Jeffry A. Simpson, Ph.D., is a Distinguished University Teaching Professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Minnesota, where he directs the Doctoral Minor in Interpersonal Relationships. His research interests center on adult attachment processes, trust, human mating, social influence, and how early developmental experiences are related to adult health, relationship functioning, and parenting outcomes. He has been the editor of Personal Relationships (1998-2001) and the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology: Interpersonal Relations and Group Processes (2009-2014). Most recently, he has served as president of the International Association for Relationship Research and currently is the chair of the Department of Psychology at Minnesota.